The Love of Christ
Time for a rant.
I keep hearing, often from people who mean well, that “Jesus loves you because of who you are.” It’s become so accepted by our world, and why not? It’s pleasant. It’s nice. It means that I’m loved just the way I am.
The problem is this is terrible theology. Yes, you’re loved – but not for who you are but who you can be.
Who you are is a fallen creature. God made us in his image (Genesis 1:27), but we are inheritors of original sin (Romans 3:23). You may think of yourself as a good person. You never murdered anyone. You try to be nice to your neighbors. You pay your bills and don’t cheat on your taxes.
Those are all good things! But they don’t make you a good person – at least not in God’s eyes. Every single day, you commit a multitude of sins. Jesus told us that even thinking of a sinful act was as bad as acting on it (Matthew 5:28).
So if we’re a constant disappointment to God, why would Jesus love us? He loves us because we can mend our ways. Christ preached the parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32), in which a wayward child disappoints his father, even going so far as to live as far away as possible. But when the son returns home, his father not only forgives him but throws a party to celebrate his return.
So it is with us. No matter how much we disappoint our Father, he is willing to forgive us. There’s a good chance you’ve seen the phrase “John 3:16” displayed on signs at sporting events and concerts and the like. It is a simple, but perhaps the most powerful, Bible verse.
For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, so that those who believe should not perish but have everlasting life
This is what we can become and it is what God wants for us. We’re told that God wants everyone to come to Him (2 Peter 3:9). Like the father in the story of the Prodigal Son, our Father is willing to forgive us and welcome us home with great rejoicing.
So yes, Jesus loves you for who you might be – a believer of God’s word. It’s his fervent wish that you will become a true follower (John 10:27) and trust in Him. We say that the greatest love anyone can have for someone else is dying to save their life.
This is exactly what Christ did for all of us. He willingly accepted the unjust judgements of men and allowed himself to suffer torture and indignity before being executed, hung on a cross. And then, God raised him from the dead.
So will you accept His love, his gift of eternal existence? If you believe, then all you need to do is profess your faith, admit your sinful nature, and ask forgiveness.
I pray that you’ve done so. If you have, find a Bible believing church. If not, I pray that perhaps these words will encourage you to eventually come to Christ.
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